American scientists have given a new explanation of the origin of the grooves on Mars that resemble riverbeds. The researchers suggested that the traces of the ancient ice sheet.
This new study of University of British Columbia, published in the journal Nature, contradicts the more common theories that ancient Mars had a warm and humid climate, not its surface was the place to be rivers, and even oceans.
The study’s lead author Anna Grau Galofre applied new methods of data analysis on thousands of Martian valleys. In particular, she and her colleagues found a striking visual resemblance of the Martian valleys and subglacial channels of the Canadian Arctic archipelago.
“After the opening of the valleys of Mars 40 years ago, many scientists speculated that the planet existed the river erodes the soil. Mars really is the hundreds of such cavities, but their origin is different. If you look at the Earth from space, we will notice a lot of valleys, some of them created by rivers of glaciers, and some — other processes, each of them has a peculiar shape. On Mars we can notice the same picture, so we can assume that some of these grooves appeared due to the ice sheets,” said Galofre.
Discovered the resemblance between the Martian valleys and subglacial channels of the canadian Devon island forced the authors to make a comparative comparison.
All were analyzed over 10 thousand valleys of the red planet.
The ice on the biggest moon of the Solar system turned into a strange substance
Simulations showed that the climate of ancient Mars at the time of formation of pits was cooler than previously thought. Scientists have suggested that deepening came as a result of water accumulation under the ice cover.
These conditions also improve the conditions necessary for preserving possible Martian life, because the ice cap is sheltering from solar radiation, and also provides additional stability and protection.